The newly-renovated McLeese Lake Library. Cariboo Regional District photo.

Interlakes Library’s opening delayed

Summer fires and trouble finding a location means library might not open until late January

Due to delays, the Cariboo Regional District (CRD) Interlakes Library will not open until 2018.

While the building has been installed, services are still being connected and delays and the holiday season have hampered the anticipated December opening. Furthermore, when the services are connected the library will then have to move all of its resources and set up shop.

“It took us a bit longer to find a site for it than it did McLeese Library because there was a library we were already replacing,” said CRD Chair Margo Wagner. “The biggest reason was the fires this summer. On Hwy 24, it was under an [evacuation] alert order for a lot of the summer, which really slowed everything down.”

The library they are replacing was inside the Bridge Lake School, which was closed by School District 27 in 2016 much to the community’s chagrin.

Margo Wagner said it’s expected to be opened in late January or early February but an exact date has yet to be determined. Wagner also said there was a big need for the library in the area.

“Libraries have kind of morphed into something completely different than they were 20 years ago,” she said. “There’s a lot more people accessing audio books on CDs, a lot of people accessing ebooks through the library system to read on their tablets. Libraries have become, especially in smaller communities, much more of a hub.”

Construction of the building’s foundation began in the middle of October. The building, however, is modularly allowing for a shorter time of construction and manufactured by Kamloops-based Horizon North.

The building is outfitted with computer stations, studying and reading areas.

The CRD will be using the design for all future stand-alone rural libraries in the future.

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